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Trapped in An Abusive Relationship?

People trapped in an abusive relationship hear, “You’re so much better than this! Why are you staying?” I knew I was better than my experience. I knew I didn’t deserve to be treated that way. Yet, when someone pointed that out to me, I wanted to dig in my heels and fight to stay.

I knew I was better than how he treated me, but I thought my abuser was also a better man than how he behaved. I saw us as equally hurting. I thought we both were trapped in an abusive relationship. 

I Thought We Were Both Trapped In The Abusive Relationship

Feeling trapped in an abusive relationship is the same as being trapped in an abusive relationship. The victim considers both the same although friends don't.I thought he must be in extraordinary pain to be able to hurt me in those ways – to say those things to me, to pretend to mean what he said, to use his hands to back up his words. I thought he and I were both in pain.

I deserved better treatment, but he and I were the same. He deserved a chance to find happiness. He deserved love, kindness, respect, … true love. He deserved my love (despite giving me disrespect and hate) because we were the same.

When someone told me I was better than him, I recoiled like a striking snake. The logic made no sense. How could I be better than my equal? They, the ones who encouraged me to leave my abuser, became my enemy.

As I began recounting the great things about my abuser to my new enemy, the better memories from our honeymoon periods took precedence. I reinforced to myself why I stayed as I tried to convince my enemy of the same thing. My logic was not the same as my enemy’s. What I did made perfect sense to me. Giving up on him meant giving up on me.

I Was A Good Person Trapped In An Abusive Relationship

I was loyal, loving, willing to be strong through the tough spots. I could see past the bad to the goodness in my abuser. I would not only survive, but pull him up out of his internal sea of hate. I owed him that because I promised him that I would never leave him. I promised to love, honor, and cherish; not use, turn-tail, and ridicule.

My sense of loyalty and the belief that he and I were equals (both effects of brainwashing) kept me trapped in our abusive relationship. I stayed because I felt that to leave indicated a betrayal of who I was. My abuser already betrayed me in many ways. I didn’t want to betray myself, so I remained loyal to him. Ensnared by who I am as much as what he did to me, I remained trapped in an abusive relationship for almost two decades.

I Didn’t Hear Right When Trapped In My Abusive Relationship

It seems as if, in my married days, I spoke a different language from my family and friends. When they told me I deserved better and offered a way out, I didn’t hear what they wanted me to hear. I heard “I don’t recognize you anymore. You’re a mess. You need help. You’re doing it wrong. There’s something wrong with YOU.”

I guarantee that’s not what they meant. Yet I picture myself saying those same well-meaning words to domestic abuse victims today. I want them to see what I see in them. But I’m not speaking their language. I am their enemy.

You can also find Kellie Jo Holly on her website, Google+, Facebook and Twitter.

Author: kholly

Kellie Jo Holly advocates for domestic violence and abuse awareness through her writing. You can find Kellie Jo on her website, Amazon Authors, Google+, Facebook and Twitter.

13 thoughts on “Trapped in An Abusive Relationship?”

  1. Hi. I have been mentally spiritually verbally abused from my parents in my teens and to now. I was drugged and rapped at a nite club I woke up on my apartment cement. I was in a all signs of abusive relationship when I was 19. I came home and my mom verbally abused I took a whole bottle of percocept and went to work catatonic like they found me passed out in a bathroom. I’m now in another verbally spiritually emotionally abusive marriage. I have no family or help I’m very sick for 16 months in pain.also when I was 19 I was kidnapped and forced to make sexual videos and raped if I left he said he would kill me. My last husband was abusive all ways and divorced him in 3 years with a cpo. Also I have been in tons of abusive relationships. My parents won’t help they kicked me out for no reason I’m their only daughter. I need help I live in Tennesse is their ways to get help? God bless you. If u are in a marriage witg a non beleiver the Bible says if your in good company stay married if your in bad company leave. I am a firm believer if u are being abused and they won’t change leave, the bible says so. I cry I have had panic attacks for 5 months since I have been here. He threatens to kick me out when he doesn’t get what he wants. We got in a bad fight and he was going to call the cops I did nothing wrong I got in my car and fled and then he said he was going to kill himself. He shot the gun I was terrified . Went outside he didn’t do it. His family sides with him . I’m alone sick no money no family. He is 46 he yells at his mom, who gives him lunch money washes his clothes lays them out, and gives him his meds. Likes is food perfect. And the icing on the cake his mom cut his steak for him for his lunch! I’m so sick I need help with showers and driving. He has problems, hes going to counseling to satisfy me. No go for yourself. I am a devout Godly woman, if I did not have Jesus, I will loose it. For the last 5 months I told him to stop or I will be in the hospital. I started cutting at 15 on lists, then my First husband I took a box cutter and cut my arms and legs. I tried to commit suicide 10 times. This man I married on FaceTime he seemed layed back and kind and loved Jesus, he’s not even saved he lied. We stay with his family. He was married and lived next door for 6 years she left in the nite why? And one year on his own so he has lived away from parents for 7 years he’s 46. I had to work and have an apt, my parents helped some but never their when you need them. We started to go to church I found one he was jelous cause I praised Jesus and sacrificed a praise , he says why don’t u sacrifice for me. I’m Gods child annoited through my praise 5 people gave a testimony how I blesses them and how to get out of religiosity. I was humbled it was Jesus, the glory goes to God. God bless and thank u. If anyone knows of help or how I could obtain money. God bless

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